Five Reasons to Visit a Registered Dietitian | National Nutrition Month

By: Annalisa Creger, RD

Have you been thinking about how you can live a healthier lifestyle, but feel that you don’t know where to start? Perhaps you have a strong family history of high cholesterol, diabetes, or heart disease and are considering what you could do to prevent developing these conditions yourself. Or, maybe you were recently diagnosed with a new condition and you are struggling to adapt to the lifestyle changes you have been advised to make. If any of these situations sound familiar, you may benefit from meeting with a Registered Dietitian (RD).

Registered Dietitians are the nutrition experts.

In order to earn their RD credentials, dietitians must first graduate with at least a bachelor’s degree from an accredited program, complete 6-12 months of supervised practice experience, and pass a nationally regulated final examination. While many medical professionals typically receive a few hours of nutrition education before obtaining their degree or credentials, RDs are the only professionals with four years of education, plus supervised practice focused on nutrition.

Meeting with a Registered Dietitian can help you manage chronic health problems.

Dietitians study the science behind what foods and eating patterns can help manage many health problems. High blood pressure, diabetes, food allergies, gastrointestinal problems, and kidney disease are just a few examples of conditions RDs can help their patients manage through diet and lifestyle changes.

Dietitians will work with you, not against you.

Although they are educated on the science behind nutrition, RDs also know that making changes to your diet and lifestyle looks different for everyone and that there are no “one-size-fits-all” solutions that work for everyone. A dietitian will help you discover what changes are most important to you and will help you set goals that are relevant to the changes you personally want to make.

Dietitians love food!

Because dietitians choose to study food, of course they understand that food should be enjoyed! A dietitian can help make diet and lifestyle changes easier by tailoring your diet according to your food preferences and keeping food enjoyable and fun.

Annalisa Creger is a Registered Dietitian (RD) at UP Health System – Marquette. For more information on Nutrition and Wellness services at UP Health System – Marquette, visit www.mgh.org/our-services/all-services/nutrition-and-diabetes.

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